Anxiety Attack vs. Panic Attack | Banyan Mental Health
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The Difference Between a Panic Attack and an Anxiety Attack

woman having a panic attack

From a fear of heights to apprehension about giving a presentation at work, we all know what it is like to be afraid.

Sometimes this fear manifests itself into some mild anxiety but in other cases, this fear can escalate into a panic attack or an anxiety attack. While you may have even experienced one of these attacks yourself, contrary to popular belief the two are very different.

Anxiety Attack Versus A Panic Attack

The difference between a panic attack and an anxiety attack can be hard to decipher if you are not sure what to look for. Both involve sudden feelings of fear and results in some physical symptoms. The terms are often used interchangeably as well as making differentiating between the two even more difficult. As providers of anxiety disorder treatment in Boca, we know that while they may seem similar, the differences are important.

Anxiety Attacks

A big difference between an anxiety versus a panic attack is that an anxiety attack is often less severe than a panic attack and also more common. An anxiety attack is usually triggered by an outside stimulus that will result in a sudden feeling of fear. Signs of anxiety attacks often include increased heart rate, sweating, and shortness of breath. Typically, these symptoms are short-lived and will go away once the stimulus that triggered the attack is gone. If you have ever experienced a sudden rush of fear from something in your immediate environment, it may have been the result of an anxiety attack.

Panic Attacks

More alarming than an anxiety attack, a panic attack is often unexpected and can occur for no apparent reason. It involves an intense rush of fear that can leave the person feeling overwhelmed and like they need to escape. Along with the symptoms associated with an anxiety attack, a panic attack can also include more severe symptoms including chest pain, nausea, fainting, and a strong feeling of detachment. These physical side effects can lead to more serious long-term health problems if they occur frequently.

Another big difference between a panic attack and an anxiety attack is that panic attacks can also lead to serious emotional and behavioral effects. A person who experiences a panic attack may constantly be in fear that another one could occur. They may also start avoiding places or events in order to try and prevent the onset of another attack.  Panic attacks may also be signs of another mental health problem. Those who experience frequent panic attacks should look for a residential mental health facility to help them combat the physical, mental, and behavioral implications of panic attacks.

Although there are many differences between anxiety and panic attacks, both can be scary and significantly impact the quality of your life if they occur frequently. Instead of living in constant fear, get help. Our mental health partial hospitalization program combines clinical and holistic treatment methods to help patients manage their mental health issues and move forward in the right direction.

Get started and learn more today by calling 888-280-4763.

Alyssa is Banyan’s Director of Digital Marketing & Technology. After overcoming her own struggles with addiction, she began working in the treatment field in 2012. She graduated from Palm Beach State College in 2016 with additional education in Salesforce University programs. A part of the Banyan team since 2016, Alyssa brings over 5 years of experience in the addiction treatment field.

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